There are clients that think QA specialists are not necessary in their projects. They assume that experienced and qualified developers can write flawless code only with a few functional tests to check basic settings and features. Nevertheless, it can be tricky and cause plenty of complex failures. Because of new implementations there may be delays and the developers must check the code for a long time to find bugs. So, QA specialists are there to avoid time-consuming and expensive situations, from the client's perspective.
Complex knowledge about the application
One of the main duties of a QA specialist's job is to find issues in the application, which at first glance might not be skipped, but turn out to be crucial for the project. If they are found as soon as possible, it is simpler to fill the gaps in the implementation, and as a result the development process will go more quickly. QA specialists, by doing lots of manual testing, find out many details and dependencies of the application, and this knowledge is important and helpful for the rest of the team. Even if developers write tests and check if their implementation works and is compatible with the application, one of the QA responsibilities in projects is to write descriptions to all stories in the sprint with testing scenarios. To speed up and improve the quality of these descriptions, in many projects the three amigos perspective is employed. In this case, users' accounts are written in collaboration with the product owner, developer, and QA specialist, and there are three perspectives:
- What problem are we trying to solve?
- How might we build a solution to solve that problem?
- What about this? What could possibly happen?
The third question is for the QA specialist, so as we can see, his participation in the project is important to have good users' stories that increase the quality of new features in the application. What is more, testers know the deepest settings or dependencies of the testing platform, so even if some tickets seem to be simple and quick to do, the QA specialist can overcome any doubts and knows the real value of the ticket.
Taking care of development and quality of the application
We assume that QA specialists must test the application, but this is too general a term to understand the specific actions of their work. We know that every delay in a project costs money, so testers, with their knowledge and experience want to improve the process of maintaining and developing the project.
At first, there are manual tests that can be done by testers or developers, but if the application is more complex, the time taken to test it manually is longer. In that case, QA specialists write automation tests to save time and do a release with a new implementation more quickly. Therefore, they have extensive knowledge about a project's specifics, and that allows them to propose changes to improve the process of testing the application.
They also know various programs, systems, methodologies, and approaches which might be used in different projects, and their job is to choose an appropriate testing strategy for the application on which they work. Experienced QA specialists know lots of types of applications, and they know what they can expect and how those applications behave.
Testers should also understand users and when they test the application try to think like a user, be aware which features are intuitive and readable and what can be improved or fixed. These questions and answers are priceless for the development team. Moreover, QA specialists work on performance and load tests. These kinds of tests are done to check how many users can use the website or application and how many actions can be completed without lags.
Experienced QA specialists know how to protect the project and improve it wisely
We assume that you would like to develop your project by updating the existing code, adding new features, and changing technologies. If the app is more complex, the number of regression tests increases. At FINGO, there are projects in which the testing environment was based only on manual tests, and our QA specialists were hired to build a testing process. Testers sometimes take whole responsibility for choosing suitable technologies and tools for language that developers use for their code. It needs experience and knowledge to build an environment where automation increases efficiency and reduces time on regression tests.
What is more, there are differences between tests for backend and frontend, and that two parts need different tools. Developers write integration and unit tests; QA specialists write user acceptance tests that validate business flow. QA specialists transform the testing scenarios from user stories in BDD (behavior-driven development) to conduct a complete automated test of the application. Next, all BDDs run on a testing environment when developers merge commits with changes. This process reduces time on regression testing in the feature, because in the automation test process we are sure that the application is checked in most cases. Of course, a situation may arise when it is possible to test only manually, due to data that cannot be duplicated in dozens of tests, but with the test automation, there can be only a few.